Alan Cunningham, Associate
This is my last message to you as President, as we will have a new slate of officers starting the New Year. The last two years have flown by and it seems like just yesterday that I was elected your president (the first Associate to hold that position). We had a lot to accomplish in these two years and have done a lot to move the association forward. We needed to reorganize to maintain our tax exempt status and that required many changes which are discussed below.
We worked to reorganize the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge into a legacy organization with a new name — Battle of the Bulge Association, Inc. This is the name approved by the Executive Council and presented to the membership at the annual meeting in Seattle, Washington on October 7, 2016. The Bylaws were rewritten (highlights are presented below) and Incorporation documents updated with the Virginia State Corporation Commission. These changes will allow us to move forward insuring that we can perpetuate the memory of the Battle of the Bulge for future generations. All of our efforts were reported to you during our annual meeting and are on our website.
The 2016 Annual Commemoration in Washington, DC, December 14-16, 2016, is going to be a special event as there have been a lot of changes within the Embassies of Belgium and Luxembourg. Events will be excellent as usual. The registration form is in this Bulge Bugle on page 9. The planning for the reunion in 2017 has also been moving along as we settled on San Antonio, Texas as the location with the dates yet to be finalized but probably in early October. The dates and general information will be reported in the next Bulge Bugle with a save-the-dates notice. I am sure that this reunion will also be a great one to attend as San Antonio is very military friendly with lots to do and see.
Congressman David McKinley (WV) introduced a Congressional Resolution to recognize the “Wereth 11,” members of an all African American unit, who fought at the Battle of the Bulge in WWII, that were taken prisoner and shot. This resolution was to recognize the courageous service of these brave men. “We must never forget the sacrifices made by America’s warriors and this resolution will make sure the heroic acts of the ‘Wereth 11’ are not forgotten,” said McKinley. In 1949, a subcommittee of the Committee on Armed Services of the Senate conducted an investigation in connection with massacres and other atrocities committed by German troops during the Battle of the Bulge. For unknown reasons, the “Wereth 11” were omitted from that report. This resolution corrects that error. Congressman McKinley asks that members of the Battle of the Bulge contact their Congressmen and ask them to become a co-sponsor of the resolution. I support this resolution.
It has been a very busy year and I hope to see you all at the Commemoration in December as we change the leadership leading into the New Year. Be well and attend the events if you can.